The Milwaukee Brewers and Houston Astros get back out on the diamond at Minute Maid Park after a 10-8 win for Houston last night. The Astros were ahead 10-4 late before the Brewers made things a bit interesting. A 3-run bomb by Yasmani Grandal pulled the Brewers within 2 in the top of the 9th. However, they were already down to their final out and didn’t have a lot of rope left to work with.
It wasn’t an ideal performance by the Astros’ pitching, but the offense came to help out. It’s usually the pitching who carry the weight in Houston, so they had to be feeling thankful that the bats saved them for a night.
When the Astros win when the opposing team allowed 8 runs, it’s always a bonus for them. There are so many good pitchers on the ‘Stros pitching staff that it is not going to happen often that they need that kind of offensive surge. Houston advanced to 46-22 on the season and are dealing with a 9-game lead over the Texas Rangers in the AL West.
They can stop and take a nap and are more than likely getting out of the regular season with a divisional crown. The Rangers don’t have the pitching to catch up and are more so focused on rebuilding than trying to make a run at the Astros.
The Angels and Mariners are always good for a letdown after going into the season with high expectations, so that leaves the Athletics who are 12 back of the Astros. Houston have gotten out to this lead because of their effort on the bump.
It was an off night on Tuesday, but they get their ace, Justin Verlander, to try and clean things up today. Verlander hasn’t shown any signs of aging and continues to perform at a high level. The trade the Astros for him with the Tigers has been a major success, which resulted in a World Series as well. Brandon Woodruff will counter for the Brewers. Head below for our free Brewers vs. Astros pick.
Milwaukee Brewers vs. Houston Astros Pick:
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Verlander is rolling right along like vintage JV. At 36 years old, he is pitching like he has a lot left in the tank. He’s said before that he wants to pitch until he’s 45, and considering the way he is pitching now, it may not be that farfetched. Now, I wouldn’t want to see him conclude his career stumbling down the stretch. It’d be nice to see him go out when he is still pitching at a high level of play. 2019 has certainly proven to be an elite season for JV, as he will pitch his way into another All-Star Game appearance.
JV goes into this contest with an ERA of 2.31 and impressive record of 9-2. He’s been consistent in his effort this season. He’s avoided getting killed thus far and has allowed more than 3 runs just twice. Both of those outings came on the road against the Rangers and Angels.
He’s been better than that in all of his showings at home. Verlander holds an ERA of 1.75 and 0.64 WHIP at Minute Maid. Opposing hitters have just a .180 OBP against him in Houston. In his last four home starts, he’s allowed 2 or less runs per start.
The Brewers have seen a lot of Verlander, but they haven’t had too much success hitting him. They’re hitting .219 with a .233 OBP with 3 home runs against JV in 146 at-bats. Woodruff hasn’t seen one Astro hitter and is going to have to catch on quickly. He has been solid with an ERA of 3.87 and has gotten some good run support to help him to a record of 8-1.
Although, Woodruff shouldn’t expect the best support with Verlander on the other side. Woodruff owns an ERA of 4.03 on the road and a 5.00 ERA in his last three outings. You’re not going to find Verlander at this price at home too often. Especially against a pitcher of Woodruff’s caliber, it’s difficult to find JV at a reasonable price in Houston. I will be on the Astros again today.